Largely recognized as one of the top prospects in the NCAA throughout his two years at Indiana University, he joins a club with a rich history of elite goalkeepers. Muse, 19, said he is thrilled to continue his development in an elite environment alongside veterans Stefan Frei and Bryan Meredith and work under the tutelage of Club Director of Goalkeeping Tom Dutra.
“I just felt the time was right,” said Muse. “I’m ready to make this next jump and become a professional. With the coaching staff and goalkeeping entourage in Seattle, I feel it’s the best place I can develop for my future. I trust the club and their plans for me to get where I want to be and to be the goalkeeper that they need me to be in the future.”
Muse joins the club on the back of two historic campaigns with the Hoosiers. In 2017, he led the NCAA in goals against average (0.26), shutouts (18) and save percentage (90.3 percent). Though he turned in plenty of stellar displays, his breakout moment came in IU’s penalty shootout win over Michigan State in the Elite Eight, where he saved three of five spot kicks to send the Hoosiers to the College Cup.
An excellent shot-stopper with impressive distribution skills, Muse lit up the college ranks once again in 2018, earning Big Ten Goalkeeper of the Year honors, as well as being named a First Team All-American and Mac Hermann Trophy Semifinalist.
“We always knew Trey was a player of great potential,” said Sounders FC Director of Player Development Marc Nicholls. “We’re pleased with the path that he took. He was able to solidify himself as arguably the best goalkeeper in college. I think everybody agrees that the time is right for him now to start his pro career. We have a pathway in place for him to make sure he gets much needed minutes, and we’re always excited when we sign one of our own.”
A native of Louisville, Ky., Muse joined Sounders Academy at the age of 16 from Derby City Rovers SC. Muse, whose father was an excellent goalkeeper for the University of Kentucky, hit the ground running in Seattle, earning back-to-back USSDA Western Conference Goalkeeper of the Year awards. Alongside current S2 players Sam Rogers and Shandon Hopeau, he helped guide the Sounders U-18s to a third-place finish in the 2017 USSDA playoffs.
“It was somewhat of a risk to move out at 16 and take that chance, but I’ve always wanted to be a professional,” Muse said. “To sign with the club where I first had these dreams come true is very special to me. I think Seattle is a great city and a great place for me to be a top professional.”
The development curve for goalkeepers varies greatly from every other position. They tend to peak later, enjoying careers that can span two decades. However, it’s critical they get professional minutes at a young age and are allowed to develop in a high-pressure environment where they can learn from mistakes.
Muse can train day-in, day-out with one of the best goalkeepers in MLS in Frei and receive guidance from one of the top goalkeeper coaches in the country in Dutra, all while playing consistent, meaningful minutes in the USL with S2. And with the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup on the horizon — Muse has been a consistent member of the player pool since the start of the new cycle in 2018 — he feels he’s in the perfect situation to develop and cement his place in Head Coach Tab Ramos’ plans for Poland.
“I want to compete for this U-20 starting spot in the short term,” he said. “I want to get consistent games with S2 and just develop as a goalkeeper. I’m in a great environment for that. And long term, I want to be the Sounders’ No. 1 eventually.”